Project Deep Dive: Microfibre

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I recently started building out a new side project that I am calling microfibre ๐Ÿงถ, it was started partially to scratch an itch to replace Twitter/X with something a bit more personal. Additionally, I wanted to build a quick and easy way to share short updates with my grandparents.

Of note - microfibre is more of a personal product rather than a public social network. It's a neighborhood cafe rather than an industrial chain restaurant! I've built it intentionally to only be used by myself, but that doesn't prevent others from creating similar versions of the same product!

What is microfibre?

microfibre is essentially a bulletin board, it allows me to post short-form (but not limited in length) text updates[1], which then get displayed on my personal site under the feed view.

It's currently built using Cloudflare wrangler to power the API, Cloudflare D1 as the datastore, and a Next.js app as the posting client (as well as this Next.js app powering my blog for rendering the feed). There's nothing magical about the project - it's a fairly basic CRUD API.

Where'd it start?

I started the project the first week of November (2023), and primarily wanted to use it to learn Go lang. I've been messing around with Go for a few months now so I wanted to use it in a real side project. Additionally I wanted to give deploying to Fly a try, I've used it here and there before but never really tried it for a full project.

I built the first version of the application in about 2 total hours, I was mainly building the application using AI via ChatGPT.

After messing around with it for a day or two, I started to realize that the cold starts on Fly were pretty rough. It got to the point that I would need to re-submit my client form to actually get the post saved in a SQLite DB within the Fly instance. I'm sure there's something I'm overlooking here - but it just felt pretty rough so I started to consider some other options.

Take 2: On the Edge

I didn't have much time to work on the project until Thanksgiving, but during the Thanksgiving weekend I found enough time to rewrite the project. I opted to give Cloudflare Worker a go, and decided to use their D1 SQLite DB offering as well.

This combination of Worker and D1 is unstoppable - it's a really nice developer experience, using a local database during development and then using the D1 binding when deployed.

The Future

There are a few things I definitely want to look at adding eventually:

  • Features:
    • Support for media when posting content
  • Technical Changes:
    • Adopting a router for the Worker (I've heard really good things about Hono!)
    • Implementing proper auth (e.g. only letting the client app post content to the API)

Footnotes:

[1] - Although I plan to support images and videos soon eventually!